Have you ever just been living your best life when all of a sudden you experience an irritating or incapacitating, seemingly out of nowhere pain?
All of a sudden muscles in your back feel as if they are rigid like some old rubber tire swing.
Sometimes it can occur when you wake up in the morning, other times when you're laying on the couch; sometimes it will be at work, while bending down to pick something up or if you're lucky even when you're on the toilet. (not lucky at all)
This pain seems like it arises out of thin air, as if it is some kind of dark magic designed to make your life miserable. Who would curse you like that?
Well, the short answer is you.
Just like most non-traumatic physical issues, there have been underlying signs that the pain is lurking under the surface for some time. Biding it's time for the most inconvenient moment to rear its annoying head. All it takes is a random catalyst to ignite the spasm and there you go, full blown misery.
Let's look at some examples of how things happen in our bodies.
If you eat an abundance of sugar one day, no big thing. Maybe a sugar rush and then crash as your organs try to regulate insulin levels. But overtime if you were to consume sugar in this fashion every day, eventually your pancreas will throw in the towel (obviously there are also genetic factors to these things as well).
If you eat an abundance of red meat one day, again no big thing. But over time when there are burgers on burgers on burgers, maybe your arteries start to build up plaques or your gallbladder becomes over worked and you develop heart disease or cholecystitis.
The same thing can happen with your muscular system.
Imagine you have had some upper back pain in the past, minimal, occasionally, only when you work really long days or have excess stress. But it isn't constant and you don't really feel like drinking water or stretching. So it lives there off and on, not really taking up much space in your head. AKA your "normal" pain.
Then over a few weeks-months, maybe you have a job change, move, or lose a loved one. Maybe you do a new work out and go ham too soon, or are very very stressed; maybe you carry heavy things for a living, go to school and sit for hours a day, then come home and sit wonky while you play CoD all night. Then you have a crappy night sleep due to all of the above.
All of a sudden you wake up with severe pain, restricted range of motion and feel unable to move or turn in a way that was once "normal" and easy for you.
What happened was, the repetitive use and abuse we put our bodies through on a daily basis finally decided to catch up with you.
Then throw in a sprinkle of the physiological responses from stress causing muscles to seize and become tight and rigid.
Now you have a full blown back or neck muscle sprain/strain injury that seemingly manifested out of no where.
Cool thing is, with treatment it will get better. But just as it didn't manifest itself over night it will take some time to resolve.
This is one of the most important reasons we need to be somewhat consistent in taking care of our bodies;
-Gradually starting new exercise routines
-Drinking enough water
-Taking breaks from work
-Being mindful of posture
-Anything that keeps our spine mobile and flexible!